Palestinian principal punished for Israeli beach party


(JTA) — A Palestinian principal was punished over a spontaneous beach party that emerged during a field trip in Israel.

Mohammad Abu Samra, 33, says he landed in hot water when video and images of his pupils dancing on a beach in Jaffa with bikini-clad women and Israeli beachgoers were sent to the Palestinian Ministry of Education.

The incident took place at the close of the Qalqilya Al Salam Secondary School’s 11th- and 12th-grade field trip to Jaffa beach led by Abu Samra, reportedly the youngest principal in the history of the Palestinian Authority, according to the Dubai-based Al Nisr Gulf News.

According to Abu Samra, an Israeli DJ began setting up on the beach as he attempted to load the buses to leave before their day permits expired.

“My pupils started dancing, and I also joined them at the beginning to let them have fun,” Abu Samra told the news agency.

“Volunteers shot a video and took a couple of still photos and forwarded them to the Palestinian Ministry of Education, with a complaint that the incident would imply that there was normalization of ties with Israel and it exposed the young generation of Palestinians to Israel’s illicit code of conduct,” he added.

Abu Samra was reassigned to a school about 30 miles away. Students reportedly have protested the education ministry’s actions.

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